Like Micheal Cimino’s Heaven’s Gate, critics have attacked and mocked the excessive ways of Dennis Hopper’s The Last Movie. Rather than focus on the film – the imagery, characterizations and experimental structure – they honed in on the sensational stories of orgies and cocaine consumption because that’s what sells. The truth is, while Hopper’s film may be flawed, it is seminal – directionless, faded and disturbing. Under the tutelage of Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky, Hopper constructed an experimental narrative – including a title card flashing missing scene as if we are watching a rush – continually reminding the viewer of what this is – just a film.While it’s not earth-shattering genius, neither was Easy Rider nor even Midnight Cowboy or Apocalypse Now for that matter, but it’s genuine and a far cry from the processed images of today, all seemingly rendered from a rendering of a rendering. Personal and real, The Last Movie itself will be rendered soon enough. “Love is everywhere.”
It stared back, mute and dense, the black eyes, unknowing. Seeing it, so dull, so obviously a mutation of a mutation with ridiculous purpose, its bloated sense of self, misguided as to think – think? – it had significance, like it actually had ideas that meant something. I looked across it, at the passing light and the shadows coming up, and tried not to think.I swung out before either of us knew it, and smacked the glass hard, indenting the top half, cracking it down the center. It was a good hit. Solid. It looked like a whale breaching, half out of the water, turning away, the stratification of its underbelly completely out, coming together at the top edge. My face was on one side of that now, the same, just warped at the edge by the balene indentation It didn’t reflect. The sides of the glass pushed out, the wood behind. My hand was bleeding.